Some time ago I received an invite from a flyfisher of a neighboring syndicate to
join their season-opener celebration on this day.
The plan was to start with breakfast at the house of one of the local flyfisherman,
then head out to the river to fish to be concluded by dinner in a local pub.

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Early morning in the Netherlands

It could not have been a worse day for fishing as the a stormy wind came blowing out of the east
and temperatures would be below freezing all day.
At the breakfast we where with 7 flyfisherman.
Breakfast took a long time, I guess we dragged our feet more or less to avoid getting out in the 
miserable conditions.
Finally we did decide to head out to the stream but at that time we where left with 5 flyfisherman as two
of us had other obligations.

At the water the conditions where harsh, even though the stream was more or less sheltered the
cold wind was blowing over the land with much force.
There was a constant flow of debris from the trees that fell around us.
The stream looked good though with clear water and a nice flow.

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The stream

The flyfisherman dispersed along the stream and tried their best to catch the first trout of the season.
After about an hour or two we gathered again at the parking lot when another flyfisherman had to leave
because of chores.
Now left with four people we decided to take a break from the cold and head for lunch to a nearby
guesthouse ... which was surprisingly closed.
Plan B was put into action so off to the next village to another guesthouse ... again closed.
As faith would have it the only option open for us now was the Ice parlor - apptly named "Ice age".
Luckily for us they also had one warm dish on the menu so we went for the hot chocelatemilk with cream
and a warm apfelstrudel.

It took a long time to warm up and an even longer time for us to finally head out again to the
stream.  
In the mean time flyfisherman number 4 had left due to chores at home so we where only
three as we hit the water.
In the stretch we where about to fish I knew for sure that fish would be present but with this
adverse wheater conditions I had not high hopes that fish would be willing to bite.
I suspected that the fish would probably be hunkering in the tightest cover they could find
right now which mean right amoung the tree roots that lined the stream.
After donating some streamers to trees I finally hooked into a fish when I drifted a streamer
right into the treeroots.
My first brown trout of the season was a fact.

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First brown trout of the season

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Ice...

Trout number one was a fact but off course there would be more fish hiding in the depths.
At another spot I actually had three takes in a row but missed the fish.
I headed out further in the woods for some good spots I knew from last season.
Access was a problem though as I had no waders with me and was fishing from the bank.
At one of the steep banks it went wrong as I slipped and voila yours truly landed in the water.
Damage was only emotional but I got pretty wet which is no fun at subzero temperatures :-)

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Steep banks.

I recovered quickly from the water, dusted off the mud and emptied my shoes before I headed
up the bank to see how the other guys where doing.
I met up with the other guys who clearly had had enough of the cold weather so we decided to 
head up to the pub where a warm fireplace would greet us .... we thought.

Well on this day nothing went as planned, we headed to the pub but there was missing something.
No smoke from the chimney ... allthough the pub should have opened according to the sign nobody 
was home.
I opted to then visit the pub of my angling syndicate nearby which luckily was open.
The fireplace was running at full blast, just what we needed.

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What we needed at the end of the day.

The only drawback was the fact that we could not get the food we wanted as the pub would only
cater for weddings, birthday parties andsoforth.
We could get a sandwhich dish though which was rather good and off course the beers tasted 
like usual.

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All in all a challenging day but spend in good company and hey ... I caught my first trout for the season.
Pretty pleased to say the least.